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Free mentorship for 2,000 people from underrepresented communities

21 June, 2020

The current Black Lives Matter movement has surfaced, once again, the systemic inequalities that are present in our communities. At Plato, we stand in solidarity with the black community and are committed to inclusion, diversity, and equality for all. We believe in putting action behind our beliefs and commitment, which is why we created the program Plato Circles for Inclusion. 

Mentorship for people of color in the tech industry is one of several systemic factors that prevent them from obtaining senior positions and achieving their career potential. This visualization shows the disparity in the % of professionals who hae access to senior leaders

Our team at Plato is launching "Inclusion Circles" - we want to give people from underrepresented groups access to the best tech leaders through group mentorship. Participants join a "Circle" that meets weekly to discuss leadership and/or career topics, and we're partnering with various organizations to promote this program to their communities. Our plan is to have 2,000 participants and 150 mentors for this free initiative.

#How it works Register for Circles (link) and get access to a curated group of experienced leaders from the global tech community. By connecting virtually, participants can share experiences, obstacles, and successes, all while gaining insights and the knowledge needed to become a better leader. Plato CEO, Quang Hoang, says that he was motivated to give back to the community in an actionable way, based on the recent protests taking place around the world.

Like everyone else, I was shocked by what I saw happen to George Floyd. The more I investigated and dug deeper, the more I realized that the protests weren't centered around an isolated case. This is a movement and it's had a real impact on me. I know I can do more and the team at Plato is uniquely positioned to do just that.

#Who are the mentors? We've reached out to hundreds of leaders and organizations in the tech world asking them to join our initiative to fight racial equality and the response rate has been through the roof! Plato Circles for Inclusion is a way for professionals to start giving back to those who systematically receive fewer opportunities than others, specifically people of color. 150 Mentors committed to helping. They're founders, engineering and product leaders. Some of them:

  • Michael Seibel (CEO @ YCombinator)
  • Cathy Polinsky (CTO @ Stitch Fix)
  • Prashanth Chandrasekar (CEO @ Stackoverflow)
  • Papanii Nene Okay (Director of Architecture @ Venmo)
  • Rukmini Reddy (ex VPE @ Abstract)
  • Donal Sumbry (Head of reliability Engineering @ Airbnb)
  • Erica Locheimer (VP Eng @ Linkedin Learning)
  • Jason Lemkin (CEO @ SaaSTR)
  • Elias Torres (Cofounder/CTO @ Drift)
  • Sara Garner (Sr Software Engineer @ Stripe)
  • Nick Caldwell (CPO @ Looker)
  • Jason Shah(Director of Product @ Airbnb)
  • Nicolas Dessaigne (CEO @ Algolia)
  • Shivani Sharma (Sr EM @ Slack)
  • Richard Sun (Sr EM @ Facebook)
  • Tido Carriero (CPO @ Segment)
  • Will Larson (CTO @ Calm)
  • Eddie Kim (CTO / Cofounder @ Gusto)
  • Cosmin Nicolaescu (CTO @ Brex)
  • Pooja Brown (VPE @ Stich Fix)
  • Nidhi Gupta (ex CPO @ Hired)
  • Michael Pryor (CEO / Founder @ Trello)
  • Juan B (fmr GM / SVP Prod/Eng @ Braintree)
  • Daniel Saks (CEO @ AppDirect)
  • Luc Vincent (EVP Autonomous Driving @ Lyft)
  • Asanka Jayasuriya (CTO and SVP Eng @ Sailpoint, former SVP Eng @ InVision) and 100 more… 

Partnering with organizations and many more, we hope to propel and inspire a community that has been sidelined for too long.

There are many ways to be inspired. Connecting with mentors is one of those ways. It's the foundation of our company and it changes lives. When people are inspired by others, they are bound to do great things. 50 years ago, my parents immigrated from Vietnam to France, and 5 years ago, I immigrated from France to America. A couple of folks have been helping me, Jason M. Lemkin, Michael Seibel, and others who trusted me despite my accent, origins, lack of experience, or race. I felt welcome and they helped to launch my career in the US. I won't ever forget this. Circles of Inclusion is set to begin today. Those who register, commit to meeting once a week for one month, to discuss topics including how to become a better leader, build incredible products, organizations and more. Registration is limited to 2,000 individuals of color and can be found on this link.

If you come from an underrepresented community, get access for free to 150 mentors here: https://www.platohq.com/community-circles?utm_source=web&utm_medium=blog&utm_campaign=plato-blog

You're a great engineer.
Become a great engineering leader.

Plato (platohq.com) is the world's biggest mentorship platform for engineering managers & product managers. We've curated a community of mentors who are the tech industry's best engineering & product leaders from companies like Facebook, Lyft, Slack, Airbnb, Gusto, and more.